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  • Author: Ann M. Lesch
  • Publication Date: 02-2016
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Foreign Policy Research Institute
  • Abstract: General Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, Egypt’s ruler since July 2013, brooks no dissent. Having “saved” Egypt from the Muslim Brothers, he has ruled by decree in the absence of a parliament, supported by a handpicked technocratic cabinet. His security apparatus muzzles the press, keeps dissident voices off-air, arrests secular as well as Islamist critics, and clamps down on civil society. He has built ten new prisons to accommodate the overflow, as political prisoners may now total 60,000.[1] As typical of military rulers, he announces grandiose projects – the new channel in the Suez Canal, the Dabaa nuclear power plant, million-unit agricultural and housing schemes, and a multi-billion dollar new capital city – without taking into consideration their cost, integrating them into long term plans, conducting comprehensive feasibility studies, or examining their social and environmental impact.
  • Topic: Security, Civil Society, Islam, Politics, Authoritarianism
  • Political Geography: Egypt
  • Author: Arthur T. Coumbe
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: With the assistance of the Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College, the Army's Office of Economic and Manpower Analysis published a series of monographs that were intended to provide a theoretical and conceptual framework for the development of an Army Officer Corps Strategy. These monographs consider the creation and maintenance of a highly skilled Officer Corps in the context of the nation's continuing commitment to an all-volunteer military, its far flung international interests, and ongoing changes in its domestic labor market. The authors of the various monographs believe that the confluence of these factors demands a comprehensive Officer Corps strategy that recognizes the interdependency of accessing, developing, retaining, and employing talent. In their view, building a talent-focused strategy around this four-activity human capital model would best enable the Army to match individual officer competencies to specific competency requirements.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, War, International Affairs, History
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: John R. Deni
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: The revolutions of the Arab Spring have had profound implications for global security generally and for U.S. security specifically. In most cases, these implications are only beginning to reveal themselves in the various countries affected across the region. Most obviously, the future of Syria—indeed, whether it remains a unified political entity—remains an open question. Whether and how the Syrian civil war is resolved is bound to impact significantly U.S. efforts to help Israel maintain its security. Meanwhile, in Libya, weak governmental institutions and rival power centers have made it difficult for the authorities in Tripoli to gain full control over the entire country. Particularly along Libya's borders, this has magnified the risk of transnational terrorists and traffickers exploiting the poorly governed spaces of the Pan Sahel. Elsewhere, the unfinished revolution in Egypt holds implications for Israel and the Palestinian Authority, for the balance of regional power vis-à-vis Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Iran, and for the global trade—especially energy resources—that passes through the Suez Canal every day.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Arabia, Syria, Egypt
  • Author: Henry Sokolski (ed)
  • Publication Date: 06-2014
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: Governments have funded most of the nuclear industry's research and development, financed or guaranteed loans for its construction and export of nuclear plants, capped its liability for offsite damages in the case of nuclear accidents, and promoted its development internationally. Throughout, officials have insisted that the dangers of nuclear weapons proliferation attendant to the further spread of nuclear energy programs are manageable.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Security, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Treaties and Agreements
  • Author: Mackubin Thomas Owens, Stephen F. Knott
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Foreign Policy Research Institute
  • Abstract: As Americans, we take for granted the idea of a government that is both free and yet strong enough to preserve the security of its citizens. But the fact is that such a government is a recent invention, first emerging as a result of political thought and practice in eighteenth century England and only coming to full flower in Philadelphia with the drafting of the American Constitution of 1787. As Harvey Mansfield wrote in his book Taming the Prince, “the combination of freedom and strength does not arise easily or naturally,” a fact confirmed “both by the grand outline of modern history and the experience of the ancients.” Throughout history, strong governments have generally been monarchies, but at the expense of freedom. It was in republics that freedom was supposed to reside but, before the creation of the American Republic, the republican form of government had a mixed record at best. Ancient republics were characterized by constant struggle between the few (oligarchs) and the many (the demos) that led to instability and weakness. Modern republics also either came to grief (the German cities) or faded into irrelevance and obscurity (Venice and the Dutch Republic). But in Philadelphia, the Founders created a government that combined the freedom of republics with the strength of monarchies. The Founders’ innovation that permitted this pairing of freedom and security to work was the “executive.” In Mansfield’s words, “the executive provided the strength of monarchy without tolerating its status above the law, so that monarchy would not only be compatible with the rule of law and the supremacy of the Constitution, but would also be expected to serve both. Furthermore, the recasting of monarchy as executive power made it dependably democratic as well as legal and constitutional.”
  • Topic: Security, Politics, Governance, Democracy
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Brahim Saidy
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Foreign Policy Research Institute
  • Abstract: The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which brings together the countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, took an unprecedented step during its 34th Summit (held in Kuwait City on December 10-11 2013) by setting up a unified military command structure for its member states. This move reflects the commitment of the GCC to establish a credible joint defense force able to advance the goal of collective security in the region. This military command will have a force of around 100,000, half of which would be contributed by Saudi Arabia, the main advocate of this initiative. GCC members will coordinate air, land, and marine forces under one common structure. In this regard, Bahrain’s Foreign Minister, Sheikh Khalid Bin Ahmed Al-Khalifa, has stated: “We want to create a central command that coordinates between all sub-commands and makes them work under one umbrella. But, the new structure [the Unified Military Command] won’t replace the Peninsula Shield forces.”[1] In terms of collective defense, the core purposes of this command structure are to provide strategic and operational command for all GCC missions and prepare members for operational employment as interoperable multinational forces. This command is expected to have a minimum number of operational commands (land, air and maritime command) as well as joint intelligence system and integrated missile defense in order to execute essential operational and peacetime missions. The challenge for this plan is to be able to undertake command and control of the full range of the military missions, including command and control multinational and multiservice forces, but more importantly to be able to support operations under the political and strategic direction of the GCC. This means that the main goal is not limited to improving coordination between different parts of existing national defense systems, but rather to establishing a real joint operational command structure. The progress towards a fully integrated defense system would allow the GCC to become a real military alliance along the lines of NATO.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: Saudi Arabia, Persian Gulf, Gulf Cooperation Council
  • Author: Øystein Tunsjø
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Columbia University Press
  • Abstract: China has developed sophisticated hedging strategies to insure against risks in the international petroleum market. It has managed a growing net oil import gap and supply disruptions by maintaining a favorable energy mix, pursuing overseas equity oil production, building a state-owned tanker fleet and strategic petroleum reserve, establishing cross-border pipelines, and diversifying its energy resources and routes. Though it cannot be "secured," China's energy security can be "insured" by marrying government concern with commercial initiatives. This book comprehensively analyzes China's domestic, global, maritime, and continental petroleum strategies and policies, establishing a new theoretical framework that captures the interrelationship between security and profit. Arguing that hedging is central to China's energy-security policy, this volume links government concerns about security of supply to energy companies' search for profits, and by drawing important distinctions between threats and risks, peacetime and wartime contingencies, and pipeline and seaborne energy-supply routes, the study shifts scholarly focus away from securing and toward insuring an adequate oil supply and from controlling toward managing any disruptions to the sea lines of communication. The book is the most detailed and accurate look to date at how China has hedged its energy bets and how its behavior fits a hedging pattern.
  • Topic: Security, Energy Policy, International Trade and Finance, Oil, Maritime Commerce
  • Political Geography: China, East Asia
  • Publication Identifier: 9780231165082
  • Publication Identifier Type: ISBN
  • Author: Denny Roy
  • Publication Date: 07-2013
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: Columbia University Press
  • Abstract: Despite China's effort to maintain peace with its neighbors, its military and economic growth poses an undeniable threat. Regional states must account for a more powerful potential adversary in China, and China has become more ambitious in its efforts to control its surroundings. Historical baggage has only aggravated the situation as China believes it is reclaiming its rightful place after a time of weakness and mistreatment, and other Asia-Pacific countries remember all too well their encounter with Chinese conflict and domination. Through a careful consideration of historical factors and raw data, Denny Roy examines the benefits and consequences of a more politically, economically, and militarily potent China. Since China's intended sphere of influence encroaches on the autonomy of regional states, its attempts to increase its own security have weakened the security of its neighbors. Nevertheless, there is little incentive for Beijing to change a status quo that is mostly good for China, and the PRC thrives through its participation in the global economy and multilateral institutions. Even so, Beijing remains extremely sensitive to challenges to the Chinese Communist Party's legitimacy and believes it is entitled to exercise influence on its periphery. On these issues, nationalism trumps any reluctance to upset the international system. Diplomatic disputes regarding the islands in the South China Sea, as well as controversial relations with North Korea, continue to undermine Chinese promises of positive behavior. Roy's study reveals the dynamics defining this volatile region, in which governments pursue China as an economic partner yet fear Beijing's power to set the rules of engagement.
  • Topic: Security, Arms Control and Proliferation, International Trade and Finance, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: China, East Asia
  • Publication Identifier: 9780231159005
  • Publication Identifier Type: ISBN
  • Author: Arthur Boutellis, Adam C. Smith
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Why.Is.Management.Important? The UN field mission is a complex beast. From the smallest political mission to the largest peacekeeping operation, it employs a uniquely diverse staff and performs a broad array of tasks in an environment that is sometimes dangerous, often unstable, and always challenging. Resources are scarce and inflexible. Internal regulations and procedures are cumbersome, and, at times, can impede rather than facilitate success. On top of it all, success is often hard to measure or even recognize. Unlike the private sec-tor, success in the field does not come from increased quarterly profits, but rather from a conflict prevented, the perception of a peace dividend, or the renewed optimism of a host population. Unfortunately, UN staff can only contribute to these goals, as so many factors are beyond the mission's control.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, International Relations, Security, International Organization, United Nations, Peacekeeping
  • Author: Jean Ping
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Book
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: Everyone knows that Africa, cradle of humanity, land of the Pharaohs and human civilization, and vast reservoir of human and natural resources, is not doing well. She crosses the deepest crisis that has shaken her since the end of colonial times. The specter of chaos lurks everywhere. She is now seen as the continent of “collapsing states” and “zombie nations”; the continent of extreme poverty, misery, and injustice; the continent of horrors, of the Rwandan genocide and of the worst atrocities committed in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Kenya, Darfur and elsewhere. This brutal reality has been, for quite some time now, analyzed by most observers and experts with certain fatalism, as testified by these book titles with pessimistic or even alarmist tones: “Black Africa Started on the Wrong Foot” (René Dumont), “Can Black Africa Take Off?” (Albert Meister); “And What If Africa Refused Development” (Axelle Kabou); “Africa Down” (Jacques Giri). By now, it is just a chorus of permanent lamentations about the “lost continent,” the “damned continent,” or the “cursed continent” whose past is not passing. And the rest of the world, which sees us as negligible, even contemptible (“all corrupt and all dictators,” they say), consider that henceforth, they no longer need us.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Economics, Post Colonialism, Natural Resources, Fragile/Failed State, Neoimperialism
  • Political Geography: Kenya, Africa, Darfur, Liberia, Sierra Leone